Pramac Racing's Yonny Hernandez escaped injury following a heavy spill in the early stages of FP1 at the Qatar MotoGP.

Hernandez went down hard at Turn 16 and the incident caused the session to be red-flagged to enable the removal of debris from the circuit.

The Colombian completed five laps and was 15th fastest overall despite his spill.

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"I was very scared, it was a nasty crash. On the straight before the last corner while I was at full-gas the bike wheelied slightly and when the front tyre landed again it slipped away without me noticing it," Hernandez said.

"I do not know how it happened. I feel lucky because I didn't fracture or break anything but I have a lot of pain in my the left hand and the right shoulder."

Andrea Iannone enjoyed better fortune than his team-mate and was an impressive fourth quickest overall and top Ducati rider on the opening night.

"It's been a very positive session for us. The bike worked very well, even though the track was more slippery than the test I immediately had a good feeling," he said.

"I'm glad to be the first Ducati, and to give my contribution to improve the bike. The Ducati is now more competitive compared to other bikes, so now we can also have fun and we can think about doing something better."

Iannone's fastest lap was 1m 55.99s and left him 0.180s behind Bradley Smith in third on the tech 3 Yamaha.